Author: Teresa Tinsley, Therese Comfort
Date of Publication: 2012
Lessons from abroad: International review of primary languages provides an evidence base on language learning within various primary curricula across the world. The report’s findings challenge the assumption that English-speakers do not need to learn other languages, not only on economic grounds but also on educational ones. Evidence discussed within the report, gathered from various education systems around the world, highlights that English-speaking education generally provides less resource and encouragement for language learning than other high-performing education systems. Part 1 of the report reviews international research and development in early language learning, presenting evidence on the benefits of starting foreign language learning in primary school or earlier. It also looks at current international developments in policies and approaches to language learning. Part 2 focuses on the issues and challenges common to all education systems that need to be addressed if primary language teaching is to be a success.